Sure, the San Jose Sharks didn’t have the best week. They made a weird transaction prior to the trade deadline and lost big time on the road only to bounce back and win big time the next day, followed by a successful trade deadline. But rest assured, they definitely did not have the worst week in the Pacific Division. Connor McDavid was suspended, the Vegas Golden Knights still can’t win at home, and the Anaheim Ducks continue to make trades to fill a void in their club. Here’s how our enemies shaped up this week.
Anaheim Ducks (24-29-9)
The Ducks started their week off well. They beat the struggling Minnesota Wild 4-0. The four goals were scored by Ryan Kesler, Hampus Lindholm, Corey Perry and Jakob Silfverberg. Ryan Miller stood firm in net, making 31 saves. They couldn’t keep it together, though, and struggled when the points counted. They fell to two division rivals. First, the Calgary Flames beat them 2-1, with the only Anaheim goal coming off Derek Grant’s stick. The Edmonton Oilers had the same luck, also finding a 2-1 victory over the Ducks. Carter Rowney had the lone goal for the Ducks.
With their luck in the ditch, of course the Ducks are turning to trades to try to remedy their problems. On Sunday, the Ducks traded away defensemen Brandon Montour to the Buffalo Sabres for prospect Brendan Guhle. They were also given a first-round draft pick. An interesting move, that’s for sure. They also agreed to a contract extension with point producer Jakob Silfverberg. Today, they exchanged Brian Gibbons for Patrick Sieloff and received a sixth-round pick from the St. Louis Blues in exchange for Michael Del Zotto.
The Ducks finish off their Western Canada road trip against the Vancouver Canucks today at 7 p.m. PT.
Arizona Coyotes (29-28-5)
The Arizona Coyotes are so hot right now. Well, aside from their 5-2 loss to the Calgary Flames on Monday. Conor Garland and Jordan Weal scored, but that was about all she wrote for the Coyotes on Monday. Things got better, though. Sure, the next two wins came in overtime, but they count. The Desert Dogs beat the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 in a shootout and then went on to find a 3-2 victory over the Canucks.
The Desert Dogs retired Shane Doan’s jersey on Sunday, but that wasn’t all they were celebrating. That game ended in a 4-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets. Josh Archibald, Lawson Crouse, Clayton Keller and Brad Richardson found the back of the net while Darcy Kuemper made 34 shots. What. A. Game.
At the deadline, the Coyotes swapped Weal for Michael Chaput from the Montreal Canadiens.
The Coyotes look to keep their point streak alive tomorrow at 6 p.m. PT.
Well this was beautiful. pic.twitter.com/C9d4R7V9hT— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) February 25, 2019
Calgary Flames (39-16-7)
Here is your weekly reminder that the Calgary Flames are still in first place, and yes, they won every game they played this week. The first was the 5-2 victory over the Coyotes, the second a 4-2 win over the New York Islanders. Mikael Backlund, Austin Czarnik, Johnny Gaudreau and Travis Hamonic had the goals. They then went on the beat the very bad Anaheim Ducks 2-1. T.J. Brodie and Andrew Mangiapane put pucks past Ryan Miller. Mike Smith made 25 saves on the night.
The Tkachuk brothers faced off on Sunday. The Flames came out on top with a 2-1 final over the Ottawa Senators. Only one of the brothers found the back of the net and it was not Matthew. The game was tied up with goals scored by Brady Tkachuk for Ottawa and Mikael Backlund for Calgary. Austin Czarnik scored the winning goal for the Flames. They’re still awaiting the return of Michael Stone and Juuso Valimaki, who should be back on the ice soon, while James Neal will be out week-to-week.
Amid rumors that they were pursuing Mark Stone, the Flames acquired Oscar Fantenberg from the Los Angeles Kings for a 2020 fourth-round pick.
The Flames face the New York Islanders tomorrow at 4 PT.
Edmonton Oilers (26-29-6)
The National Hockey League’s golden boy Connor McDavid was suspended this week for a hit on the New York Islanders’ Nick Leddy. He was forced to sit out Saturday’s game against the Anaheim Ducks and will miss out on Monday’s match up with the Nashville Predators. After falling short to the Arizona Coyotes, things improved for Edmonton even without McDavid. The game that saw the infamous hit and the Oilers won 4-3 in overtime. McDavid had a goal and an assist. Without McDavid, the Oilers kept afloat. They beat the Ducks 2-1 in regulation. Josh Currie scored his first NHL goal and new acquisition Sam Gagner found the back of the net to bring them to victory. Mikko Koskinen made 33 saves.
As for deadline moves, the Oilers placed Brandon Manning on waivers, but were unable to move Milan Lucic. This team is desperate and it shows.
The Oilers face the Predators today at 5 p.m. PT.
Los Angeles Kings (23-32-6)
So maybe I have to remind you that the Sharks aren’t in first place every week, but I also get to tell you the Los Angeles Kings remain in last place, which is a positive part of my week. It was yet another rough week for the Kings. First, the reigning Stanley Cup Champion Washington Capitals beat the Kings 3-2. They held on with Alex Iafallo and Ilya Kovalchuk finding the net, but ultimately fell short. Then came the Nashville Predators, who beat them 2-1. Things got that much worse when the Florida Panthers put a full 6-1 beating on them. Dustin Brown had the lone Kings goal, while Jonathan Quick allowed all six goals. Yikes, LA.
The Kings dealt Carl Hagelin to the Capitals for a first-round pick in the 2019 draft and a conditional sixth round pick in the 2020 draft. They also sent Spencer Watson to the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for winger Matheson Iacopelli. Finally, they received Calgary’s 2020 fourth-round pick for Oscar Fantenberg.
They need to make a change, I’m just not sure if all will be cured with transactions.
The Kings play the Tampa Bay Lightning today at 4:30 p.m. PT.
Vancouver Canucks (26-28-8)
The Vancouver Canucks hit the ice twice this week and lost both games. First, a 3-2 overtime defeat handed to them by the Coyotes. Adam Gaudette and Bo Horvat found the net, while Jacob Markstrom made 35 saves in an attempt to keep the Canucks alive. They went on to be shut out by the Islanders, falling 4-0. Markstrom was between the pipes again, but this performance was less than stellar, making 19 saves on 22 shots. The battered Canucks are still waiting for key pieces of their lineup to return from the injured reserve as they slip further out of the playoff push.
A fairly good mood at the trade deadline saw the Canucks shipping out Erik Gudbranson to the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for Tanner Pearson. In a less-good move, they exchanged top-end prospect Jonathan Dahlen to the Sharks for prospect Linus Karlsson.
Vancouver will see Anaheim today at 7 p.m. PT.
Vegas Golden Knights (32-26-5)
The Vegas Golden Knights still can’t win at home. They lost all three games they played this week, two of them on home ice. The one away game they played was against the Colorado Avalanche, where they were shut out 3-0. They returned home to play the Boston Bruins, who came back to beat them 3-2 in a shootout. Reilly Smith and Nate Schmidt got Vegas on the board, while Marc-Andre Fleury made 25 saves.
The Winnipeg Jets rolled into town and took down the Golden Knights 6-3. Marc-Andre Fleury allowed all six goals. The three Vegas goals were scored by Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Jonathan Marchessault and Shea Theodore. Erik Haula underwent knee surgery and his return to the Golden Knights’ lineup is month-to-month.
Hoping to put them back on top, the Golden Knights won out on the Mark Stone sweepstakes, trading Erik Brannstrom, Oscar Lindberg and a 2020 second-round pick to the Senators in exchange for the forward, who they immediately signed to an eight-year, $9.5 million AAV contract.
The Dallas Stars are up next for the Golden Knights tomorrow at 7 p.m. PT.